The Cross: My email to my parents in mid-2010

Background: I had just dropped out of my engineering course as a confused teenager. While I was pretty sure what I didn’t want, the path ahead was unsure. Naturally, parents were worried and tried to communicate their anxiety and love for their child (me) in multiple ways. Once they sent me an email with ‘The Cross’ story (below) and I replied with an email. The email makes sense. Beat the norms. Charting out our path is possible.

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Email Reply:

I am not traveling with others.
I have a jungle ahead of me, not a plain road with humans carrying huge crosses. If they are successful, good for them. They carry huge crosses to prove they have strong backs. Because they have to carry these huge crosses for a lifetime.

I have a jungle up ahead. Jungle filled with hidden dangerous paths, wild carnivorous animals and cannibals. My life is not safe in the jungle. So a huge cross is pointless. A shorter cross allows me to break it into two as a weapon to protect myself. It can be separated into two sticks to light a fire. A shorter cross will keep me alive in the jungle.

When/If I survive the jungle, I have mountains to climb. Again, the two sticks are very useful instead of a huge cross. Who needs a strong back? I need a wise brain, strong limbs and will power. And love/trust.

When I do reach the other side with my two short sticks, I can draw figures in the ground and tell the strong-backed ones where to put the crosses, how to place them. I can tell them to bring in more huge crosses. Because they have proved they have strong backs. But I can lead.

Because I have survived the jungle. I have survived the mountains.

Since I was a child, I have heard from my dear family that I’m different. I still remember how Tai used to say, “Veglaach aahes re tu, Tuta/Raju..”
Not different, but I’m crazy. And wild.
And I know what I’m doing.

I might stumble. I might fall. I might even lose hope.
I might even die, if the time’s right.
But in this jungle, I will never regret not carrying the huge cross.
And I wont miss the plains.
I don’t belong there.

Love,
Sushrut

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